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dani

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10 Ways To Practice Self Care Today

Feeling stressed and burned out? Stuck in your daily routine, it’s easy to forget to take proper care of yourself. But practicing self-care is vital for your mental health. Here are 10 simple self-care activities you can do today and every day! Self-care – the art of looking after yourself How to practice self-care is different for each person and can vary from day to day. For me, self-care activities go way beyond just eating right and exercising, even though these are also important pillars of self-love. Self-care simply means setting aside some time to put myself first, letting go of any worries, and do things just because they make me feel good. While the mainstream perception of self-care often involves splurging, trust me when I tell you that you can practice it every day – often even without spending any money at all! These 10 self-care activities do not…

5 Anti-Inflammatory Foods To Eat Daily

Add these 5 anti-inflammatory foods to your daily diet to fight inflammation and help protect your body from chronic diseases! First off: What is inflammation? So, I have noticed that inflammation has become kind of a health buzzword lately, yet most people don’t really know what it means. Let’s take a look. Let me start by saying that inflammation is not all bad. We actually need inflammation to exist! In broad terms, inflammation is your immune system’s response to a stimulus. An inflammatory response means your immune system is ‘fighting against something that might be harmful.’ So, while inflammation is often presented as something negative, it’s actually essential in small amounts for immune-surveillance and host defense. The human body uses inflammation to help fight illness and protect our body from further harm. However, too little and too much inflammation both cause problems. When people refer to the damaging nature of inflammation,…

How To Build A Low-Sugar, High-Fiber, Protein-Packed Smoothie

 Read on and discover what it takes to build a low-sugar, high-fiber and protein-packed smoothie and learn how to develop healthy smoothie recipes yourself using my winning formula!  Smoothies – quick to prepare, easy to transport, simply the perfect on-the-go snack. Having gained a reputation as a nutritional superstar, juice bars are popping up everywhere and restaurants and fast food chains around the world have whole smoothie menus! You’ll even find premade versions on grocery store shelves. But wait a minute! Are smoothies healthy? It depends! Done right, smoothies can be a great addition to a healthy diet packing vitamin-loaded ingredients along with fiber, minerals, and other healthy substances. However,  even if you toss a lot of healthy ingredients into your mixer, a breakfast smoothie can still add up to a lot of sugar and empty calories and can, therefore, interfere with your health and fitness goals. Now, it’s easy…

Third Trimester Update

As I write this, I’m well into my third trimester at almost 36 weeks. My c-section is scheduled for next week so I thought it would be the perfect time for a third trimester update. Read why I have to have a c-section here. This pregnancy has been different from my first in so many ways. When I got pregnant with Everett, I had a miscarriage six months prior. I was terrified of miscarrying again. I ran to the bathroom constantly to make sure I wasn’t spotting, which is how my miscarriage started. I bled for two weeks before miscarrying. It was torture. When I started spotting with Everett, I was convinced I was having a miscarriage. I was devastated. I cried hysterically. I felt gutted and terrified, like I’d never be able to have a child. But the cause of the bleeding was never identified, and I continued to…

Gluten-Free Shrimp, Artichoke, Spinach & Tomato Pasta

This 20 minute gluten-free shrimp, artichoke, spinach & tomato pasta came about when I felt too lazy to make lunch. I’m pregnant, I work from home and I really just felt like walking up to Chipotle. This is the danger of living within walking distance of a Chipotle. Wanting it ALL the time. Eating ALL the Chipotle. But I persevered. I got my ass up and opened my fridge and stared in for a solid seven minutes. My toddler was running around in his winter boots (it’s August, by the way) and our amazing sitter was chasing him. I tend to look at random ingredients until some sort of plan forms in my brain. I had frozen shrimp and artichokes, spinach that was just beginning to wilt, I always keep brown rice and quinoa pasta in my pantry, Ya’ll know I always have butter. I can’t live without it. If…

The Impossible Burger: Unhealthy and Bad For the Environment?

After writing about Beyond Meat, I figured it was time to pull the plug on the Impossible Burger. Because when it comes down to it, the reality is that the ingredients in the Impossible Burger have been linked to serious health issues and environmental damage. When did food grown in a lab become everyone’s idea of health food? When did it become sustainable? We have become so detached from our food, how it was grown and who grew it. It truly represents how disconnected from nature our society is. While the intention behind the Impossible Burger may be good, and I’m sure it is, the reality is that this is not food. This is not environmentally friendly. This is not sustainable. This is not health or nutrition. And let me explain why. First, let’s take a look at the ingredient list. Full Ingredient List:  Water, Textured Wheat Protein, Coconut Oil,…

Paleo + Gluten-Free Postpartum Freezer Meals

I am a planner. I love to plan just about everything in my life. Vacations, date nights, work days. I don’t know why I find planning so enjoyable. But I actually had a ton of fun planning these paleo + gluten-free postpartum freezer meals. I think it gives me a sense of calm. Like if I’m prepared, the postpartum newborn haze will be a lot easier. And honestly, it will be. When I had my first son unexpectedly, I came home to a fridge full of rotten food (we were in the hospital for two weeks!) and no food prepared ahead of time. I was in so much pain from the fibroid removal, emergency c-section AND vaginal birth (read about that HERE) that I could barely move. I had to sit at my kitchen island and give my husband instructions on how to make a lasagna. He is good at…

How I’m Preparing For My Natural C-Section

To say that I’m not thrilled about having to have a c-section is a bit of an understatement. While everyone has told me that planned c-sections aren’t terrible, I’m still a little traumatized from my first birth. With Everett, I went into labor, was crowning, was rushed into an emergency c-section, put under anesthesia, quickly cut into to discover a large fibroid, got a myomectomy (fibroid removal), my uterus was cut vertically (which is much more difficult to recover from) and after all that – he came out vaginally anyway. This is why I’m doing everything I can to make this birth go as swimmingly as possible so I thought I’d share how I’m preparing for my natural c-section. A natural c-section might sound a bit backward – how could it be natural? It’s not really, but I’m making it as natural as possible. I talked to my OB about…

Second Trimester Update

The family and I just got back from Folly Beach and it was a much needed vacation. My first trimester was a bit challenging – I was incredibly nauseous and had serious food aversions. I ate way more junk food than usual. It was also a bit difficult just because we had such horrible weather. DC was freezing cold all winter and then rained all spring. This picture was actually taken in my 28th week which is the third trimester but I haven’t been taking regular bump pics! Did anyone slack on these with their second pregnancy? I feel so bad! I had so many more pictures when I was pregnant with Everett. More and more I feel like I’m connecting with this baby in my belly. It’s not that he wasn’t planned, but I got pregnant so easily that I was just surprised. I thought it would take longer.…

An Ubiased Review of Monat

After my review of Rodan + Fields last month, I polled my readers and asked which company they would like me to review next. Monat won by a landslide. To be quite honest, I had never even heard of Monat. I had no idea what the company was or what they sold. This truly has allowed me to write an unbiased review of Monat. I actually had to figure out what Monat sold. Was it replacement shakes, like most of my reviews? Was it skincare? Neither – it’s haircare. I read about the company’s history and their culture and I like that they’re a family owned business. I don’t like that I’ve emailed the company numerous times asking for clarification of ingredients and have received no response. My immediate concerns were seeing fragrance on the ingredient list numerous times, as well as ingredients made with polyethylene glycol (PEGs). I also…